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Haunted Castle Cake Recipe

Haunted Castle Cake Recipe

Although this cake will steal the show, it's really not that difficult to make. The castle and tombstones are decorated sugar cookies, the cake is a simple layer cake, and the ghosts, tree, bat and cat are made from simple icing. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 1 hour 20 min. Bake: 15 min. + cooling YIELD:12 servings


  • 1 tube (16-1/2 ounces) refrigerated sugar cookie dough, softened
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 3 tablespoons meringue powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 6 tablespoons warm water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Orange, black, violet, brown, green and yellow paste food coloring
  • Pastry tips—round #4, 6 and basketweave #46
  • Orange Tic Tacs
  • White pearl dragees
  • New paintbrush
  • 1 package devil's food cake mix (regular size)
  • 4 cups buttercream frosting
  • 8 wooden skewers (12 inches)


  • 1. In a large bowl, combine cookie dough and flour. Press into a 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan lined with nonstick foil or parchment paper. Bake at 350° for 12-14 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool completely before carefully removing to a cutting board.
  • 2. Trace full patterns onto waxed paper; cut out. Arrange patterns over baked cookie. With a serrated knife and a sawing motion, cut out castle pieces and tombstones. Set cutouts aside.
  • 3. To make icing: In a large bowl, combine the first three icing ingredients; add water and vanilla. Beat on low speed until blended. Beat on high for 4-5 minutes or until stiff peaks form. Remove 1/4 cup icing and tint orange. Place a damp cloth over bowl and cover tightly between uses.
  • 4. To decorate: Place all castle pieces on a parchment paper-lined work surface. Insert #4 tip into a pastry bag; fill with orange icing. Pipe a window outline on piece A and a door outline on piece B (do not fill in). Pipe and fill in two windows on piece B and one window on each C piece. Press Tic Tacs around all windows.
  • 5. Remove 1/4 cup icing and tint black. Insert #4 tip into pastry bag; fill with black icing. Outline castle pieces and tombstones in black. Fill in window on piece A and door. On parchment paper, pipe 2-1/2-in. bat and cat shapes. Place a damp paper towel over pastry tip, place in a small resealable bag and set aside. Add pearl dragees for cat and bat eyes; add pupils if desired.
  • 6. Insert #4 tip into pastry bag; fill with 1/4 cup white icing. Carefully pipe white icing "mortar" between Tic Tacs. On parchment paper, pipe 2-in. ghosts. Tint some white icing gray and thin if necessary; fill in tombstones.
  • 7. Remove 3/4 cup reserved icing and tint violet. Insert #46 tip into pastry bag; add 1/3 cup of the violet icing. On waxed paper, pipe 12-15 fence sections. (Each section has three strips, about 1 to 1-1/2-in. long.) Set aside 1 tablespoon violet icing for bricks. Thin remaining violet icing with 1-2 teaspoons water. Insert #6 tip into pastry bag; fill with thinned icing. Fill in castle pieces with thinned icing.
  • 8. Tint remaining icing brown. Using tips #4 and 6, pipe a tree onto parchment paper. Let all pieces dry for 24 hours.
  • 9. With a paintbrush and reserved dark violet icing, add brick designs to castle pieces; let dry.
  • 10. Prepare and bake cake according to package directions, using two greased 9-in. round baking pans. Tint buttercream frosting green. Spread frosting between layers and over the top and sides of cake.
  • 11. To assemble: Just before serving, add each castle piece to cake and support with skewers. Just behind the center of the cake, make a 3-in. wide x 1-in.- deep cut into the cake; gently insert castle piece B. About 1 in. behind piece B, make a 1-1/2-in. wide x 1-in.-deep cut into the cake; insert piece A. For C pieces, make 1-1/2-in. x 1-in.-deep cuts in front and on each side of piece B; add remaining pieces.
  • 12. Finishing touches: If desired, add phrases and a bunch of flowers to the tombstones; arrange on cake. Add faces on the ghosts; attach ghosts and bat with icing. Add the cat, trees and fence. Yield: 1 haunted castle.

Recipe Note

Editor’s Note: Meringue powder is available from Wilton Industries. Call 1-800/794-5866 or visit Use of a coupler ring will allow you to easily change pastry tips for different designs.

Reviews for Haunted Castle Cake

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Delenn's Grandma User ID: 5634152 103321
Reviewed Jul. 28, 2013

"I'd love to make this cake for Halloween this year, but where are the patterns? the link under the editor's notes doesn't work."

hfpmom User ID: 6570008 187395
Reviewed Oct. 20, 2012

"I clicked on the link "Halloween Party Favorites 2009" under the editors notes, hoping to find the patterns, but it says the "error 404" the page cannot be found. Is there another link?"

concretehole User ID: 6784692 211232
Reviewed Oct. 14, 2012

"There is no pattern to trace under Editor's notes. Please add the here or put in a link so we can download them. Thank you so much."

concretehole User ID: 6784692 107739
Reviewed Oct. 14, 2012

"There are no instructions after the Editor's notes. Please, give us a link or copy and paste them here, as no one can see the so called non links you said are here. Thank you."

Roxyk User ID: 1580630 187394
Reviewed Sep. 29, 2012

"I would like to make this cake but cannot find the link to the cut outs. Please post in reviews or actually in the recipe."

MartinwoodForest User ID: 4909212 116331
Reviewed Oct. 23, 2010

"bdd1944, the link to the pattern is at the bottom of the instructions after the Editor's note. On the pattern it states that it should be enlarged on a copier at 125% in order to be the correct size.

Good luck! And please let us know how it turns out and if it's difficult to make."

bdd1944 User ID: 1401890 118400
Reviewed Oct. 23, 2010

"Where do you get the pattern to trace?"

SassyChick User ID: 5413140 186640
Reviewed Oct. 23, 2010

"Adorable! I will definitely make this. Great centerpiece. Adults and children will love it."

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